Thursday, April 14, 2011

One Week In

Today marks me being here for one week and still no heart. Yesterday was probably the worst day since I've been here. During the night Tuesday, the nurses were having trouble getting a reading from the SWAN in my neck so it was decided to switch it to the other side of my neck a day early. They told me this yesterday morning as I was about to eat my breakfast, which was quickly removed and I was told I wasn't allowed to eat anything because of the procedure. I already knew it was going to a long day. My Dad was on his way down so I would just have him pick me up some Potbelly's so I would have it when I got out of my procedure. They also changed the settings on my pacemaker so it keeps my heart rate above 50 bpm. I guess Tuesday night it got as low as 27 bpm and they wanted to fix that. It's previous setting was 30 bpm. My resting heart rate has been about 45 bpm so as soon as they made the change I could feel the pacing. It was annoying at first but now my resting heart rate is about 55 bpm but while trying to sleep last night it kept dropping and the pacing was a bit irritating. My Dad got here around Noon and brought me my mail and snacks and things. His friend Sue also made some brownies for me.

I went into my procedure around 3 o'clock and was back in my room by 4. This was my 6th right heart catheterization but the first time they put it in the left side of my neck instead of the right. I was in a lot of pain afterwards, especially when I swallowed so the Potbelly's was put on hold for a few hours. They gave me some pain meds but they didn't seem to help much. The nurse's here are great and they could tell I wasn't feeling well so they were really trying to make me feel better. I finally go washed up and then got out of bed and had my Potbelly's sandwich (which was delicious!) and that definitely helped my mood. I was really tired so I pretty much just wanted to get back in bed and go to sleep but I knew that if I went to bed this early I would wake up super early so I fought it and stayed up until 10:30. By that time I had had more pain meds plus my usual sleeping pills so I was pretty much asleep before my head hit the pillow but I got a new nurse at 11pm so she ad to her beginning of shift check-up and woke me up. She was just doing her job so I can't be mad at her. It is what it is. 

Me sleeping with my eye mask to block out the light.
Since I'm in the CCU, the wall to the hallway is
all windows and although there's a curtain, a lot of
light still comes in. Thanks Marie Petrullo for the mask!
My neck is feeling a little better today but I'm still on pain meds because it still hurts when I swallow but not as bad as it did yesterday. I'm still tired but I'm pretty sure its just the meds.

This week has been full of my friends from college visiting. Tuesday evening my friends Mary and Krista payed me a visit and it was so good to see them. I don't think I've seen them since college and it was so good to catch up. There was definitely a lot of laughing and reminiscing about our days at Monmouth. Tonight, my friend Katie is coming to visit so I'm sure there will be a lot of the same. As for this weekend, I'm not sure who (if anybody) is coming to visit.

Just wanted to keep you guys up to date as to what's been going on the past few days and how I'm doing. I have a salad from Potbelly's for lunch and then my nurse practitioner is bringing me some home cooking for dinner. It's so nice to have the doctors, nurses and hospital employees here as part of my support group. It makes it a lot easier being so far away from my family and friends.



  1. Aww Bry- - keep these coming! I love reading them! I hate that you are so far away! Can't wait to come visit. I'm very glad all the nurses and employees are being so supportive. Hang in there and I hope the neck pain goes away soon! Love and miss you! xoxo

  2. trish and i are coming sunday after the dash!!! :)